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Lighting an Orchard


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#1 Allan George

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Posted 24 August 2008 - 06:17 AM

Hi there,

I am shooting a Short Film in an Orchard in a few weeks. It is a Horror suspense film and A chase sequence takes place in the film through the Orchard.

I was thinking to use a 2K and round out the trees and break them up a little for deffinition.
I also have two 800w lights and I may get a couple more in as well if need be.

How does anyone suggest to light the Orchard? Especially through a chase sequence. I was also thinking about just doing a master lighting set up and just change it when need be.

I know it sounds like a lot of rambling. I hope someone can help!

Cheers!
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#2 Walter Graff

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Posted 24 August 2008 - 06:45 AM

I give a class occasionally where we go through a well known movie scene by scene. The purpose is to analyze what was done lighting wise. Afterwards the groups always say the same thing, "I never realized just how little continuity there is in what I thought was continuity. " With the lighting you mention you can keep a theme in a master but that theme will have some variables after you cut to your other shots since your using a rather large area and depending on angle etc, you'll need dramatic changes with closeups doing what works. The theme might be the large fixture flooding the overall orchard and the other fixtures moving along with the talent with one more talent illumination and the other rim/kicker. I'd use the bigger fixture as a theme for the orchard in terms of base light and the other two for each shot after the master to make it do what needs to be done to keep talent lit. A well cut motion picture often has quite a noticeable discrepancy between masters and close ups that is lost to good story and editing so I'd concentrate not on trying to simply match the master to everything but matching the overall sequences to a visual theme. Sometimes you have to make dramatic changes in such a senario but once cut together the story takes over and no one notices.
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#3 Chris Pritzlaff

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Posted 24 August 2008 - 10:03 PM

Walter brings up some great points from an artistic standpoint.

However, for the technical side, you might face some problems if you are trying to see too much of the orchard - Im not sure how big of an area you are trying to cover, but 2 800w lights and a 2K are not going to go very far when trying to light a large environment.
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#4 Andrew Brinkhaus

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Posted 25 August 2008 - 03:53 PM

In fact, in sunlight a 2K and a few 800W tungsten lights will be practically useless. I would suggest some large HMI's, 2.5K, 4K, 10K and up.

Edited by Andrew Brinkhaus, 25 August 2008 - 03:54 PM.

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#5 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 25 August 2008 - 04:16 PM

If you're shooting @ night, you might be in trouble for wide shots with so little light, as mentioned. During the day, I don't see the point of the lights, as you can get away with reflectors/bounceboard for much cheaper (rental) than lighting. . .
You also don't mention power. How are you powering these things?
Further, are you shooting steadycam, dolly, tripod, handheld? All of this will effect how you light as well.

If it's night and you want to experiential, you can try to shoot day for night. It has a certain "look," to it which I feel will transpose nicely to horror film. Test it out, first, though, as it's a tricky effect to pull off sometimes.
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#6 Allan George

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Posted 26 August 2008 - 06:20 AM

Hi guys,

I am using a jib arm, stedicam, shooting on a sony z1p. Before I forget I am using a platform dolly as well.

I am looking at getting a 4K and a couple of HMI.

I am going to get a 3k generator and run power off mains as well. Shooting on the 15th days are counting down. I have to get these lights as high as possible to imitate moon light.

Any suggestions for that as well?
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